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Tombigbee EC - We’re here for you, our members FEBRUARY 2014

Tombigbee Electric COOPERATIVE

Five Ways to Pay Page 5



Energy Tips Pages 6-7

2014 TEC Scholarship Page 8



Steve Foshee CO-OP EDITOR

Kay Marshall ALABAMA LIVING is delivered to some 420,000 Alabama families and businesses, which are members of 22 not-for-profit, consumer-owned, locally directed and taxpaying electric cooperatives. AREA cooperative member subscriptions are $3 a year; non-member subscriptions, $6. Alabama Living (USPS 029-920) is published monthly by the Alabama Rural Electric Association of Cooperatives. Periodicals postage paid at Montgomery, Alabama, and at additional mailing office. POSTMASTER send forms 3579 to: Alabama Living, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, Alabama 36124-4014.


AREA PRESIDENT Fred Braswell EDITOR Lenore Vickrey MANAGING EDITOR Melissa Henninger CREATIVE DIRECTOR Mark Stephenson ART DIRECTOR Michael Cornelison

VOL. 67 NO. 2 FEBRUARY 2014


5 five ways to pay

Ways to pay as we prepare for our move.

6-7 Energy tips Surge protectors and work safety tips.

20 Gifts for your sweetheart

ON THE COVER Valentine’s Art Contest winner Reagan Phillips is our cover artist. Reagan is a 3rd grader at Haleyville Elementary and the great-granddaughter of TEC member Joann Pounders, also of Haleyville. Congrats!

Valentine’s doesn’t always have to mean flowers and candy, especially when native Alabama-made arts and crafts and romantic getaways make such unique gifts.


340 TechnaCenter Drive Montgomery, Alabama 36117-6031 1-800-410-2737 E-mail: advertising@areapower.com www.areapower.coop NATIONAL ADVERTISING REPRESENTATIVE:

National Country Market 611 South Congress Ave., Suite 504 Austin, Texas 78704 1-800-626-1181 www.nationalcountrymarket.com www.alabamaliving.coop

26 Worth more than one trip

It might take more than one drive to experience all there is to see at this Auburn restaurant, which also includes a fresh produce market and a nursery.

When you see this symbol, it means there’s more content online at www.alabamaliving.coop! Videos, expanded stories and more!

Congratulations to our 2nd Place art winner, Abby Beasley, of Winfield!

DEPARTMENTS USPS 029-920 • ISSN 1047-0311

9 16 24 27 32

Spotlight Alabama Outdoors Alabama Gardens Fish & Game Forecast Cook of the Month

Printed in America from American materials

Alabama Living


Tombigbee Electric Cooperative Board of Trustees Jim McRae Chair

David Collins Vice-Chair

Curt Morris

Manager’s Comments

No increase in kilowatt hour cost. Steve Foshee Manager of Tombigbee EC

Secretary Treasurer

Terry Gosa Dennis Harbor William T. Hulsey Chad Williams Sheila Gunter Warren Williford

Visit our website www.tombigbee.org

Headquarters: P.O. Box 610 Guin, AL 35563 205.468.3325

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The board passed the budget that has in place only a dollar increase to the customer charge per month with no increase in the kilowatt hour cost. It is again a very tight budget. Tombigbee’s costs continue to increase across almost all expense categories and have done so for several years. However, in the last five years, there has only been two dollars increase per month in the customer charge and no increase in the kilowatt hour charge. It is a remarkable accomplishment. The board understands, in a very meaningful way, how many members are struggling with bills. However, the board also understands without the power being on, cost is of little concern. You may notice for December and January a sharp increase in your power bills. This is not, for the most part, due to rates as mentioned above, but rather simple colder weather than last two years. Last January we had several days where the temperature got up to 60 degrees. It was similar for December 2012 as well but has not been the

case this year. The construction of the new facility continues moving ahead. Comple tion date will likely be in early June. It is amazing the issues that have to be taken into consideration for a project like this. There are no problems if we had all the money to take care of them but we don’t. So, we are making decisions with a very tight budget in mind. We are very happy to say we completed a very successful year in 2013 with regard to our safety record. It is of utmost importance to us that we have a very successful safety culture at TEC. I am sincerely grateful for the dedication and professionalism of the workers because they take safety very seriously - not only for themselves - but also for the public. Overall, 2013 was a solid year for your Cooperative. We hope we are serving you well. A sfoshee@tombigbee.org

TEC Technology

Preparing for our move with more options to pay Article by Brenda Overton Technology/Member Services

With our projected move date in June this is going to bring about a lot of changes for our membership. These changes include our mailing address, our phone number and locations where payments can be made. Some of these things are easy to fix, but others bring about some concern for our membership and we want you to know that we are doing everything we can to help! One way we are going to do this is by allowing payments to be made at some of the local banks in the community. As many of you are aware, we currently take payments at PeoplesTrust Bank in Hamilton and we began accepting payments at State Bank and Trust in Guin. We plan to make this option available in more communities soon. There are still a lot of arrangements to be made for the move and as we go through all of the steps, we will keep you informed. We plan to do so with updates online, articles in this magazine and bill stuffers, so keep an eye out for what’s to come! 1. PAY ONLINE Visit us at www.tombigbee.org -- Click on My Energy Account -- Log in using your account number or username and password -- Choose the method you wish to pay • Credit/Debit card • E-Check • Draft 2. PAY BY MAIL Mail your payment to us Tombigbee Electric Cooperative P.O. Box 610 Guin, AL 35563 But remember: this address will soon change! Alabama Living

3. PAY BY IVR Call us at (205) 468-3325 or (800) 621-8069 -- Choose option 2 - Automated Member Service System -- Choose option 3 - Pay by E-check or Credit/Debit card -- Enter your Tombigbee Account Number 4. PAY IN PERSON Visit us Monday - Friday 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM 7686 U.S. Hwy 43 Guin, AL 35563 But remember: this address will soon change! 5. PAY AT A REMOTE LOCATION State Bank & Trust 7370 US Hwy 43, Guin, AL 35563 Peoples Trust Bank 1281 Military St. S., Hamilton, AL 35570 **NOTE**Payments made at bank locations must be made on or before the due date, the coupon must be brought with the payment and the payment must equal the amount due. A

FEBRUARY 2014  5

Guard your electronics with surge protectors When lightning strikes nearby, it can ruin your TV, computer, stereo equipment and anything that’s plugged into the wall. That’s because it can create a power surge—a phenomenon that’s responsible for millions of dollars of property damage every year. Power surges most commonly occur when lightning strikes, but also can occur when a refrigerator, air conditioner or other large appliance motor turns on and of. The surge usually enters the home through the path of the cable TV or satellite dish cable or through telephone or electrical lines that come into the house. They don’t always destroy your electronic equipment and appliances, but over time, they can damage them and shorten their life. To protect your valuable electronics you can plug them into surge protectors, which simply plug into an electrical outlet. Although surge protectors often look like power strips because they have several spots for plugging in multiple devices, not all 6  FEBRUARY 2014

power strips offer surge protection. Check the one you buy to make sure it does. For more protection, you can install special electrical outlets with surge protection. They are common in spots where there’s no room for a plug-in surge protector, like near a countertop microwave oven. Whole-house surge protectors can cover all outlets in your house. Ask an electrician about whether that’s a good option for your home. That said, a lightning strike that’s powerful enough can zap even your surge protector. For the ultimate surge protection, unplug your equipment from the wall when you know a storm is coming.

Cold spots in home can indicate air leaks, poor insulation

If your floor is so cold you have to wear socks with your slippers, check the insulation level in your basement or crawlspace. Just as cold air in the attic doesn’t have to make your home cold, neither does cold air from the crawlspace. If your heating bill shows a sudden spike, it’s possible your home’s ductwork has cracks or kinks or is missing some of its insulation. Ask your HVAC technician to crawl up in your attic and have a look. If some of the rooms in your home are drafty, that could be a sign that the insulation level in the walls is too low or that cold air is leaking into your home through windows or wall penetrations around electric outlets. Seal wall penetrations with caulk; weather-strip your doors and apply plastic over windows. A

If some of the rooms in your house are too cold while others are too hot, you might need more insulation in your attic. Cold air that seeps into your attic doesn’t have to find its way into the home’s living space. Adequate attic insulation, properly installed, can catch it.


TEC Tips

Practice electrical safety at work, too. Your home isn’t the only place where you can control how safely you use electricity. Watch out for safety hazards at work, too. Here are 10 ways to prevent accidents involving electricity where you work:

l Turn off computers and appliances when you’re

not using them. l Avoid using extension cords except when the tool or device that’s plugged into it is in use. When you’re finished, uplug it. l Keep your cubicle, office or other work space as clean and uncluttered as possible. Keep walking areas clear of tools and put away any electrical equipment as soon as you’re finished using it. Dust your desk or work table frequently. l If your space is heated by radiators, don’t pile stuff on top of them. If it’s heated through baseboards, don’t block their air flow by stacking files, books, boots or anything in front of them. l Don’t use any electrical equipment that appears to be damaged or if wires are frayed or cracked. l Keep coffee and water away from the electronics and equipment to prevent spills that can cause a shock. Clean up spills immediately. l If you use a portable space heater near your desk, turn it off every time you walk away, even for a few

minutes. l Plug all electronics into a surge protector. l Don’t overload electrical outlets. Just because a power strip has room for six or seven plugs doesn’t mean the electrical circuit you plug the strip into can handle that load. l Have your equipment inspected, maintained and replaced regularly to prevent malfunctions that could start fires. A

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014  7

TEC Scholarship 2014

Once again it’s time for the 2014 Tombigbee EC scholarships. We are delighted to bring this opportunity to the students in our service area and urge you to contact our office for your application form today. Deadline for entries is March 14, 2014.

To receive an application simply contact your high school guidance counselor or send an e-mail requesting an application to: 205.468.3325

info@tombigbee. com You can also call our office and request applications too!

Deadline for applications: March 14, 2014

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205.468.3325 (ext. 224) Good Luck, Seniors!


Spot Light

In February FEB. 20-23

Red Door Theatre set for ‘Mama Won’t Fly’

Race participants prepare to start at the 2013 Critter Crawl at the Alabama Nature Center in Millbrook.

The Red Door Theatre in Union Springs will host the play “Mama Won’t Fly” Feb. 20-23. The play begins with a race against the clock when Savannah Sprunt Fairchild Honeycutt agrees to get her feisty mother all the way from Alabama to California in time for her brother’s wedding. Savannah’s problem: Mama won’t fly! With only four days to make it to the ceremony, Savannah has no choice but to drive cross-country with her mother in a vintage sedan. On Feb. 20-22, dinner starts at 6 p.m. and the performance begins at 7:30 p.m. A Sunday, Feb. 23 matinee is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Dinner is $15 and the play is $15. For more information, call 334-738-8687 or email conecuhpeople@ knology.net.

FEB. 15

Make plans to run wild at the Critter Crawl Start the new year off right with a little exercise and a breath of fresh air at the Alabama Nature Center’s (ANC) Fourth Annual Critter Crawl in Millbrook Saturday, Feb. 15. This year, the Critter Crawl will feature a newly mapped 10K run or a 5K run along the trails located at Lanark, home of the Alabama Nature Center, a hands-on outdoor education facility, and headquarters of the Alabama Wildlife Federation. The Critter Crawl takes runners through a portion of the Alabama Nature Center’s five-mile trail system. Pre-registration is $25 (10K and 5K) or $20 (1 mile). Registration on site that day is an additional $5 charge. Prizes will be awarded for male and female overall, Masters (40+) and Grand Masters (50+). Also, three deep in the following age groups: 8 and under, 9-12, 13-18, 19-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-69, 70+. An addition to the line-up at this year’s event there will be a costume contest. Prizes will be awarded. Music and food will be provided, plus door prizes and lots of room for kids to play. The 5K starts at 9 a.m. and 1 mile starts at 10 a.m.; both races start and finish at the ANC pavilion. Visit www.alabamawildlife.org or call Elizabeth Johnson at 334285-4550 for more information, or register online at www. active.com. Participants may pick up race packets at the ANC Pavilion Friday, Feb. 14 from 1 - 5 p.m. Alabama Living


Artists ready for Orange Beach Festival of Art The Orange Beach Festival of Art is set for March 8 and 9, and will feature more than 100 local and regional fine artists of visual, performing and culinary arts. The festival is a fine arts juried event held every second weekend in March for the past 40 years on the grounds of the Coastal Arts Center of Orange Beach and Waterfront Park on Canal The Orange Beach Festival of Art ofRoad. Festival hours are fers many art opportunities for young Saturday and Sunday from people. Above, a 2012 festival attendee 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is free shows off her sock puppet. with public parking at The Wharf. Shuttles will be provided at a rate of $2 per way, to and from the festival. No public parking will be available on site. Musicians will include Roman Street, Sugarcane Jane, Three Bean Soup and Brent Burns. Culinary selections featured at the festival offer gourmet flair, while still providing plenty of child-friendly options. Kid’s Art Alley offers young festival goers plenty of hands-on fun. For more information, visit orangebeachartsfestival.com or call 251-981-ARTS (2787). FEBRUARY 2014 9

Power Pack

AREA welcomes new staff members Jacob Johnson has joined the Alabama Rural Electric Association of Cooperatives (AREA) as director of advertising and marketing. Johnson Johnson comes to AREA from Walker360, an advertising and printing firm. He previously worked in sales for a national broadcast company and started his own branding/advertising consultancy in 2009. Johnson is a communications graduate of Auburn University.

Randy Glaze has joined AREA as manager of safety and loss control. He previously worked at Altec, Inc. as safety training instructor. Before that, Randy Glaze spent 16 years with International Paper in Selma where he was electrical safety coordinator. He holds two technical degrees and a Bachelor of Science degree in Resource Management from Troy University. Randy was recently accepted into the Advanced Safety Engineering Management program with the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Keith Twitty has joined AREA as manager of safety and loss control. He was previously with TVPPA as technical programs manager Twitty and a journeyman/lead line worker. Twitty served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1986 to 1992. He is a graduate of Wallace State Community College and completed the TVPPA Lineman Apprentice Training Course at Nashville State Technical Institute.

Disability benefits for what (severely) ails you The month of February is a time to recognize a number of unfortunate ailments that disable and take the lives of too many people. February is American Heart Month, focusing on heart disease and how to prevent it. Every year more than 700,000 Americans have a heart attack and about 600,000 die from heart disease — making up about a fourth of the nation’s deaths. Feb. 4 is World Cancer Day, a chance to raise our collective voices in the name of improving knowledge about cancer. Feb. 14 is National Donor Day, encouraging everyone to become an organ donor, giving the ultimate Valentine to someone in need. These awareness campaigns remind us how critically important Social Security disability benefits are for people with severe disabilities and their families. Many people do not like to think about disability. However, the onset of disability is unpredictable and can happen to anyone at any age. The unfortunate reality is that one in four 20-year-old workers become disabled before reaching retirement age. When severe illness or injury robs a person 10 FEBRUARY 2014

of the ability to work and earn a living, Social Security disability benefits can provide a critical source of financial support at a time of need. When you work and pay Social Security taxes, you earn credits. These credits count toward retirement, survivors, and disability benefits. The number of credits you need to qualify for disability benefits depends on your age, and some of the work must be recent. For example, the younger you are the fewer credits you need to have. For most people, you need to have worked at least a total of 10 years, but if you are younger, you may qualify with as little as a year and a half of work. You don’t need to have had a heart attack, organ transplant, or cancer to qualify for disability benefits. However, you must have a disability that is severe enough to render you unable to work and that is expected to last a year or longer, or result in death. If you have such a disability, you should start your application now. That’s because it takes time to determine whether you qualify for benefits. It usually takes three to four months for a medical decision from the state agency that evaluates your condition.

If your application is approved, your first Social Security disability payment will be made for the sixth full month after the date the state agency determines that you qualify for disability benefits. Take advantage of our online disability starter kits. The kit will help you get ready for your disability interview or online application, and provides information about the specific documents and information that we will request from you. You will find the starter kits at www. socialsecurity.gov/disability. Once you complete your online disability starter kit and you’re ready to apply, the most convenient way to accomplish this is online at www.socialsecurity.gov/applyfordisability.

Kylle’ McKinney, Alabama Social Security Public Affairs Specialist, can be reached in Montgomery at 866-593-0914, ext. 26265, or at kylle. mckinney@ssa.gov.


Be my Valentine ... I dare you Many folks, middle-aged men mostly, do not look forward to Valentine’s Day. Not just because they are expected to send the woman they love flowers and candy and such stuff. They can handle that. But they fear that the object of their affection might consider the gift insufficiently romantic and judge them thusly. That happened to a guy I knew who briefly lived under the mistaken assumption that the true measure of love was presenting your dear one with a gift that you would buy for yourself – give unto others as you would have them give unto you, or something like that. He loved to fish. See where this is heading? What better way to say “I love you” than with a new rod and reel? The relationship was over before the year was out. That’ll learn him. Personally, I do not look forward to Valentine Day’s because it brings back memories of when I was in elementary school. Of all the events on our calendar, none created more consternation and concern, anxiety and angst than the ceremony of acceptance and rejection that occurred every Feb. 14. Teachers seemed to love it because preparation kept us busy. They knew that the idle hands of pre-adolescents are surely the devil’s workshop. Preparing started innocently enough. No sooner was Groundhog Day past than our teacher would bring out the scissors, colored paper and paste, from which the artistic among us (usually the girls) would create hearts and flowers. Cupids were too complex for our meager talents, but the guys had lots of fun drawing bows and arrows. All this creativity notwithstanding, Alabama Living

as the day approached we nervously waited to see who would give what to whom. Freud, or one of those other likeminded psychologists, contended that there is a “latent period” in young lives when they are not interested in the opposite sex. Freud never attended my elementary school, where most of my classmates skipped any “latent period” that might have been lurking in the corners of our young lives.

Boys wanted girlfriends and girls wanted boyfriends. Problem was, the number of what might today be called “trophy” selections was limited, so a lot of the girls “liked” the same “cute” boys, and most of the boys “liked” the same “cute” girls. The exchange of valentines on Valentine’s Day would force a public declaration of affection, followed by reciprocation or rejection. As the day approached, you could cut the tension with a knife. Symbolism was everywhere. What if you gave “cute girl” your

handmade valentine and Bubba trumped you with a store-bought better one? What if Johnny upped the ante with a Milky Way taped to his card? Then there was the gnawing fear that Billy Ray would give his token of love to the “cute girl” you “liked,” and she would give him one in return – leaving you with a broken heart. And what was going through the minds of those who were afraid they would get no valentines at all. Teachers attempted to remedy that situation by instructing us to give valentines to everyone. Most of us responded by passing out to classmates those massed produced cards bought in bulk from the drug store. Then we gave a “special” Valentine to the “cute girl” or the “cute boy” that we wanted to sit with us in the lunchroom. Thus by the end of the day we all knew who “liked” whom, who was “popular,” and whose love was and would remain unrequited. Think of the scars left on our adolescent psyches. Oh, we got over it, mostly. But every Feb. 14, it comes back to haunt some of us. Now, should I go with flowers or candy or something from Bass Pro Shop? Ed. Note: This is the first in a series of periodic columns on humorous people, places and things in Alabama. Harvey H. (“Hardy”) Jackson is retired professor emeritus of history at Jacksonville State University whose most recent book is The Rise and Decline of the Redneck Riviera, featured in the January 2013 Alabama Living. His work appears in the Anniston Star and Northeast Alabama Living.

FEBRUARY 2014 11

Alabama-Made: 11 Family Friendly Places to See, Touch and Taste Alabama’s Manufacturing

The Honda plant in Lincoln gives visitors a look at how the Odyssey and Ridgeline are produced. PHOTO BY HONDA

What do cars, cookies and bamboo bikes have in common? Like many other great products, they are all made here in Alabama. Take shopping local to a whole new level and head to the factories to see your favorite Alabama products in production. You’ll develop a new appreciation for “Made in Alabama” and have some great family fun, too. 12 FEBRUARY 2014

By Jacqueline Rosser

Honda Manufacturing of Alabama

Do you drive a Honda? Tour the Honda Manufacturing Plant in Alabama and see how your ride is made. Many of Honda’s vehicles are produced at their Lincoln plant. On the tour you’ll walk the production floor watching sparks fly as the weld robots assemble the Honda Odyssey and Ridgeline. From engines to paint colors and more, you’ll see what it takes to make an awardwinning vehicle. The free tour of the Honda plant is offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Visitors must be at least 12 years old. Wear fully enclosed shoes and long pants. www.hondaalabama.com www.alabamaliving.coop

A tour of Bud’s Best Cookies includes samples. PHOTO BY KRISTIE LAROCHELLE, KP STUDIOS

Golden Flake Chips

Crunchy and delicious Golden Flake Chips are a lunchtime staple across Alabama. Pay a visit to the Golden Flake factory in Birmingham to watch plain potatoes transform into deep fried delights. One of the highlights of the tour is the fresh samples of warm chips, pork rinds, etc. shared with visitors along the way. If you can’t make it to the factory Golden Flake offers online tours on its website: www.goldenflake.com. Tours are typically offered Monday-Thursday at set times each morning. Small groups (less than 10) generally don’t need a reservation, but you may want to call in advance (1-800-239-CHIP) to verify availability. Visitors must be at least 5 years old. Wear closed toe/heel shoes suitable for walking.

Bud’s Best Cookies

Hop aboard the CookieLand Express and travel to a delicious world filled with cookies. Bud’s Best Cookies tour in Birmingham shows visitors how their signature bite-sized cookies are mixed, baked, packaged and shipped. Come with an appetite; you’ll enjoy samples on the tour and to take home. Tours are free, but reservations are required. Set up your tour by calling their offices at 800-548-1504. www.budsbestcookies. com.

Working Cows Dairy

Meet the farmers behind Working Cow Dairy when you stop by their Slocomb farm at milking time. Jonny de Jong, CEO of the family run farm, says, “We suggest people come by at 7 in the morning or 5 in the afternoon to see the cows being milked and things of that nature.” While you’re at the farm, stop by their store and pick up a bottle of fresh and delicious Alabama organic milk. www.workingcowsdairy.com/

Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama

Samples of delicious Blue Bell ice cream await visitors to the creamery’s Sylacauga plant. PHOTO BY BLUE BELL CREAMERIES

Blue Bell Creamery

If you’re in Montgomery, take the family over to the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama plant. This busy Alabama facility assembles almost 1,500 vehicles each business day. The Hyundai plant tour is free for visitors age 6 and up. Reservations are required and can be made online up to a year ahead of your visit. This tour often fills up well in advance; book early if you want to go. www.hmmausa.com. Visitors to Hyundai’s plant south of Montgomery can see robots in action. PHOTO BY ROBERT BURNS, HYUNDAI MOTOR MANUFACTURING ALABAMA

After enjoying an informational tour of Blue Bell Creamery in Sylacauga visitors are treated to a serving of their luscious ice cream. The tour features a video presentation and a walk overlooking the production area. Visitors can also visit the Blue Bell Country Store and Parlor. The Blue Bell Creamery tour lasts approximately 45 minutes and is offered Monday-Friday. There is a small charge for the tour. Appointments are required and can be made by calling 256-249-6100. More information: www.bluebell.com

Golden Eagle Syrup

Since 1929 Alabamians have been enjoying Golden Eagle Syrup’s delightfully sweet flavor. If this is your favorite syrup, or even if it’s not, a tour of the production facility in Fayette is fascinating. You can visit any time, but it’s much more enjoyable when they’re in production (generally Tuesday-Thursday). Call 205-932-5294 for more information about the tour. www. goldeneaglesyrup.com/ Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014 13

Watch a motorhome come together in the Red Bay factory of Tiffin Motorhomes. PHOTO COURTESY OF TIFFIN MOTORHOMES AND CONSTELLATION IMAGEWORKS

Back Forty Beer Co.

Tiffin Motorhomes

Have you ever wondered how a motorhome is made? Head to Red Bay and take a tour of Tiffin Motorhomes, home of some of the most popular motorhomes in the country. You’ll meet the expert craftsmen that help construct the beautiful homes on wheels and see production in action. Tours are held Monday-Friday at 9:30 a.m. Appointments are not necessary for small groups. Large groups (10 or more) should call in advance to schedule an appointment. Full details are available on the Tiffin Motorhomes website, tiffinmotorhomes.com

If you think a brewery tour and children don’t mix, think again. Back Forty Brewery’s Grains to Glass tour in Gadsden is fun for adults and children alike. Children will enjoy munching on freshly malted hops while adults indulge in local craft beers as they explore the brewing process. Brad Wilson and his brother Jason run the brewery (5th generation in the beer business) and seek to make this manufacturing facility family and community friendly. “We want to reach out to the community… we want to be a place where people can come and handle the business of their day and interact with the community,” said Brad Wilson. If you come in for a tour, don’t be surprised to see Brad’s almost two year old daughter Keller running around in her pink brewing boots. They do more than just make beer here; they foster family and community connections. Tours are offered on Saturdays 3-9 p.m. No reservation needed. backfortybeer.com

Inside the Back Forty Brewery in Gadsden. PHOTO BY ERIC WRIGHT


Visitors to the Mercedes-Benz plant in Vance can watch production at Daimler’s only U.S. plant. PHOTO COURTESY MBUSI

Mercedes-Benz U.S. International

Mercedes-Benz U.S. International has been producing vehicles at its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Vance (Tuscaloosa County) since 1996. Visitors can tour the factory and check out the history of Daimler-Benz in the Mercedes-Benz Visitor Center’s Museum, the first of its kind outside Germany. Adjacent to Daimler’s only U.S. automobile manufacturing plant, the center exhibits propel people down a multimedia path through the past, present and future of automotive technology. Factory tours are offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9 a.m. and 9:15 a.m. and at 12:30 p.m. and 12:45 p.m. Tours typically last about two hours. Cost is $5 per guest. Advance reservations are recommended. Call 205-507-2252 or 888-286-8762. MBUSI recommends visitors download its Tour Guidelines and Requirements from its website at www.mbusi.com, and reading the Factory Tour FAQ guide before calling for reservations.

14 FEBRUARY 2014

When you think of bikes, you probably don’t think of bamboo, but once you watch the bike making process at HERObike in Greensboro, you’ll likely associate the two forever. While HERObike doesn’t offer a formal tour, the studio is very open and visitors are welcome to come in and watch the production at any time. If you like what you see and want a bamboo (locally grown in Alabama) bike of your own, classes and kits are available for purchase. www.herobike.org A HERObike staff invites visitors to watch them create bicycles out of an atypical ingredient: bamboo.


Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014 15

Gerald Swindle, a professional bass angler from Warrior, Ala., lands a bass he caught on a squarelipped crankbait. Swindle will be one of nine Alabama anglers fishing the 2014 Bassmaster Classic. PHOTO BY JOHN N. FELSHER

Classic returns home with big impact

By John N. Felsher


hen the top 56 professional bass anglers in the world compete in the 2014 Bassmaster Classic, one will take home a check for $500,000 and possibly millions more in endorsement contracts. Regardless of who wins, though, Alabama will reap the benefit. The 44th annual Bassmaster Classic will take place in Birmingham and on Lake Guntersville Feb. 21-23. The competitors will run out of Guntersville City Harbor to fish the 69,100-acre lake for three days and bring their daily catches to the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex Arena, for the official public weigh-ins. When the “Super Bowl of Fishing” comes to town, it makes a huge impact. Besides the anglers, thousands of fans, media and others will pour into Birmingham. Many fans from surrounding cities and states only come in for one day, but many anglers bring their families and stay more than a week. In addition, representatives from hundreds of companies around the world will gather for the Bassmaster Classic Outdoors Expo, held in conjunction with the tournament weigh-ins at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex. “More than 100,000 people attended the 2013 Classic in Tulsa, Okla.,” says Michael Mulone, a B.A.S.S. spokesman. “When we bring a Bassmaster Classic to a state, there’s a sense of pride for both the state and B.A.S.S. The B.A.S.S. staff alone books nearly 4,000 hotel rooms. That doesn’t count all the companies bringing exhibits to the event or fans coming from out of town. When a Bassmaster Classic comes to a town, it usually leaves about a $21 to $24 million economic impact. The lion’s share of the economic impact will be in the Birmingham metropolitan area.”

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Birmingham hosted seven previous Classics, most recently in 2010 when Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Mich., won on Lay Lake. The 2014 Classic will be the 12th such event held in Alabama since 1971, more than twice as many as any other state. The hosting Bass Anglers Sportsman Society, better known as B.A.S.S., began in Montgomery and now calls Birmingham home. Although Bassmaster magazine ranks Lake Guntersville number 4 on its list of the top 100 bass lakes in the nation, the largest lake in Alabama only hosted one previous Bassmaster Classic. In 1976, Rick Clunn of Ava, Mo., won his first of four classics on the Tennessee River impoundment. While the Bassmaster Classic hasn’t visited Lake Guntersville in 38 years, other major tournaments ran on the lake. In 2010, former Bassmaster Classic champion Skeet Reese from Auburn, Calif., caught more than 100 pounds of bass during three days of competitive fishing. The year before, Aaron Martens won a Bassmasters Elite Series tournament on Lake Guntersville with more than 107 pounds. Martens, of Leeds, heads a pack of nine Alabama anglers vying to win the big event in their home state. Originally from a suburb of Los Angeles, Martens moved to Alabama because of the great fishing the state offers. “We moved to Alabama to be more centrally located to the lakes we normally fish,” he says. “Alabama is beautiful and the people are really nice. Alabama, particularly the Birmingham area, is the heart of bass fishing in America. This area has a lot of great lakes and rivers to fish.” Martens fished in 14 previous Classics since 1999 and placed www.alabamaliving.coop

second in four of them, losing twice to Kevin VanDam. In 2002, he placed second behind Jay Yelas on Lay Lake. In 2013, he earned his second Angler of the Year title. During his career, he earned more than $2 million in tournament winnings with six victories in B.A.S.S. events. The home team also includes Chris Lane of Guntersville, the only former Bassmaster Classic champion from Alabama fishing the current event. Lane will make his fourth classic appearance, having won five events since 2000 including the 2012 Bassmaster Classic on the Red River in Shreveport, La. Lane grew up in central Florida, but moved to Alabama in 2009. He’ll compete against his brother, Bobby, from Lakeland, Fla. “It’s a fantastic feeling to compete in my hometown,” the former champion says. “Competitive bass fishing has a lot of roots in Alabama. This is where B.A.S.S. originated. As far as I’m concerned, Lake Guntersville is the best bass lake in the country. I look for records to fall for the amount of people coming to the amount of boats on the water watching their favorite anglers to the amount of weight coming to the scales.” Other Alabama competitors include Gerald Swindle of Warrior fishing his 14th Classic. Randy Howell of Springville fished 11 previous classics. Steve Kennedy of Auburn competed in six classics and Greg Vinson of Wetumpka will make his second appearance. Coby Carden of Shelby and David Kilgore of Jasper will each fish their first classics. Also making his first classic appearance, Jordan Lee will represent Auburn University. The 22-year-old student from Cullman qualified for his first classic by winning the 2013 Carhartt College Series National Championship. The youngest competitor this year, Lee was the runner-up to his brother Matt in the 2012 Carhartt

College Series, making the second year in a row that Auburn University sent a student to fish the big show. Fans watching the weigh-ins should see some impressive catches with so many excellent anglers competing in one of the best bass fishing lakes in the nation at the best time to catch monster bass. In late winter, bass normally reach their largest size of the year as females swell with eggs before the spring spawn. A big female largemouth in February could carry several additional pounds of eggs before she deposits them into a nest in March or April. To avoid depleting the resource, the tournament will release any bass brought to the scales. “It’s going to be a tough tournament,” Martens says. “The best anglers in the world will be fishing it at the right time of the year. One of the things I look forward to when fishing a classic is meeting people. We get to meet a lot of fans from all over at these events.” All year long, Lake Guntersville gives up numerous bass in the 3- to 8-pound range and some in the 9- to 12-pound range. Charlie Bertus of Huntsville landed the official lake record largemouth, a 14.50-pound lunker he caught on Feb. 21, 1990. In 2010, Duanne McQueen of Stockbridge, Ga., landed the lake record smallmouth, a 5.85-pounder. “Late February is a great time to fish Lake Guntersville, but it all depends upon the weather,” Lane says. “I’m expecting some giant limits of bass. I think it will probably take about five bass weighing 25 to 30 pounds per day to win. I think the big bass might be in the 10- to 12-pound range. The lake has some giant bass so it wouldn’t surprise me if someone caught a bass in the teens.” For complete schedules and more information on the 2014 Bassmaster Classic, visit www.bassmaster.com/classic. A Kevin VanDam, a four-time Bassmaster Classic champion from Kalamazoo, Mich., shows off a bass he caught. He will be trying for his unprecedented fifth Bassmaster Classic title in 2014. PHOTO BY JOHN N. FELSHER

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014 17

Kevin VanDam, a professional bass angler from Kalamazoo, Mich., lifts up his world championship trophy after winning his fourth Bassmaster Classic title, on Feb. 20, 2011, in New Orleans. He will be trying for his unprecedented fifth Bassmaster Classic title in 2014. PHOTO BY JOHN N. FELSHER

Super Bowl of fishing is ‘part of the American lifestyle’ By John N. Felsher


alled by many the “Super Bowl of Fishing,” the 44th annual Bassmaster Classic returns home to Alabama when the best anglers in the world gather to fish Lake Guntersville Feb. 21-23. The biggest event in professional bass fishing started in Alabama. In 1967, Ray Scott of Pintlala started collecting membership fees for an organization dedicated to people who like to catch largemouth bass. He dubbed the organization the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society, better known as B.A.S.S. Scott established the first headquarters for his organization in Montgomery. In the late 1960s, Scott organized fishing tournaments and gave away prizes to anglers who caught the heaviest stringers of bass. In 1971, he created a championship for those anglers and called it the Bassmaster Classic. Thus began four decades and counting of professional bass fishing at the highest level. Today, B.A.S.S. officials announce the classic venue a year in advance, but in those days, Scott kept the tournament location secret to keep competition equal. In October 1971, Scott picked 24 anglers and flew them and their wives to Atlanta. There, they boarded a chartered plane with about 30 outdoor writers, destination unknown. The group landed in Las Vegas, Nev., to fish Lake Mead. When it ended, Bobby Murray, a 26-yearold competitor from Hot Springs, Ark., made history by becoming the first Bassmaster Classic champion in history. For the effort, he collected a check for $10,000. Legendary lure maker Tom Mann of Eufaula, Ala., took second. “It was a mystery flight,” Murray remembers years later. “When the airplane reached 10,000 feet, they told us where we were going. We could pack 10 pounds of tackle and four rods. They were trying to make the playing field as fair as they could. Before the first Classic, not one of the 24 anglers had ever been on Lake Mead.” At the time, few people knew anything about professional bass fishing. When a brief story about a guy winning $10,000 for catching bass in Nevada went over the news wires, few editors believed it. Who would get paid to catch fish and then release them? Now, the 56 anglers from 23 states fish18 FEBRUARY 2014

ing the 2014 Bassmaster Classic will compete for a share of the $1 million purse, plus potentially millions more in endorsement contracts. This year, the Classic competitors will fan out over the 69,100-acre Lake Guntersville. After three days of practice, they will begin their daily competition each morning at 7 at the Guntersville City Harbor. All 56 competitors fish the first two days. Only the top 25 anglers fish the final day. While the original competitors weighed their fish on a floating boat dock before about 30 writers and 30 spectators, thousands of fans and hundreds of journalists will gather in the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex Arena to watch the 2014 Bassmaster Classic. The free public weigh-ins will begin at 3 p.m. daily. “We had more than 100,000 people attend the 2013 Classic in Tulsa,” says Michael Mulone, a B.A.S.S. spokesman. “This will be one of our biggest classics in size and scope. We’ll use more expo space in Birmingham than we’ve ever used before and all events are free. The Bassmaster Classic is not just a fishing tournament. It’s part of the American lifestyle.” While waiting for their favorite professional anglers to return with their catches, fishing fans might also wish to visit the Bassmaster Classic Outdoors Expo. Hundreds of companies will put up displays for fishing fans to peruse. The free expo will be from noon to 8 p.m. Feb. 21, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Feb. 22, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 23. At the Expo, visitors can explore more than 220,000-square feet of exhibit space at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex and attend seminars on different topics at sponsor booths. “At the Expo, people can mingle with their favorite professional anglers and prominent people in the fishing industry like Bill Dance, Hank Parker and others,” Mulone says. “Most people are not going to play in an NFL game and throw a football like Peyton Manning, race against Jimmy Johnson in NASCAR or compete against Tiger Woods on a golf course, but they can all use the exact same equipment in exactly the same place as Kevin VanDam to catch bass.” Visit www.bassmaster.com/classic. A www.alabamaliving.coop

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014 19


Valentine’s Day with a gift from the heart By Marilyn Jones

For some, Valentine’s Day is a romantic holiday. But for others it’s a day to remember everyone they love: parents, children and friends. “The person I always think of every Valentine’s Day since I of Dauphin Island. “The people I love want chocolate, so I buy was very young is my dear mother,” says Vickie Ashford of Bir- them candy, a card and some sort of trinket for Valentine’s Day. mingham. “I am the tenth of 11 children. I’ve done this for years. My mother always found a way to make “I don’t think it’s just a romantic holiday, each and every one of us feel special.  I think it’s about remembering the ones we “That’s why I don’t have to think twice love,” Steiner adds.  about making her feel special every day, and Valentine candy and other treats especially on a day dedicated to love,” she Morgan Price Candy Company in Decaadds. “She loves flowers, but not cut flowtur is a great source for everything chocolate. ers, only those that she can plant and watch They’ve been creating candy for Valentine’s grow, enjoying them longer.  Now, at age Day and all year round since 1987 when 87, she especially likes to enjoy her gifts as Mary Morgan began a mail order candy long as she can.” company out of her home and a church “On Valentine’s Day I always think of kitchen. Because of the quality of her candy how my dad would stop at a local drug and attention to detail, her business grew store and bring home chocolate covered Your Valentine might fancy one-of-auntil she had to open a candy store. cherries for my sister and me, and a Whit- kind handcrafted jewelry from Coastal Today the tradition continues under the man’s Sampler for mom,” recalls Meg Lewis Arts Center Gift Shop in Orange Beach. of Montgomery. “Now I try to do something small for the office guidance of Nancy Curl. The candy, made from time-honored and my close friends.” Continued on Page 22 “I remember my husband and children,” says Machelle Steiner 20 FEBRUARY 2014


Alabama Living

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Continued from Page 20 recipes, is available at the Decatur store and can be shipped to all parts of the country. “Hope’s Cheesecake in Gulf Shores ships nationwide as well,” says Kim Chapman of Silverhill. “If you’re remembering someone out of town, they make it easy to send a nice gift. Just about everyone loves cheesecake.” For the cheese lover, Belle Chèvre in Elkmont is an excellent choice for goat cheese. Belle Chèvre has produced a variety of internationally acclaimed cheeses since 1989 using European farmstead techniques. Belle Chèvre offers individual cheese selections, breakfast spread, cheesecake, cookies and gift boxes at their store. These items can also be shipped.

Artwork by Rebecca Koontz of Greensboro and carved baby blue birds by Dallas County artist John Sheffey are featured at Black Belt Treasures in Camden. Photo courtesy Black Belt Treasures

Gift Shop Ideas

“My wife appreciates gifts that remind her of nature or perhaps something hand made,” says Mark Lyman of Tillman’s Corner. “That’s why I look for gift shops with handcrafted items.” Black Belt Treasures in Camden is an exceptional place to buy made-by-hand creations. “We’re a nonprofit arts center representing more than 300 artists,” says Kristin Law, art program and marketing manager. The sprawling store offers everything from baskets and pottery to folk art, sculptures and quilts. “We also have a wide array of art classes taught by our regional artists — and a gift certificate to a class also makes a great gift for Valentine’s Day,” adds Law. “I have personally had couples take my pottery and hand-built ceramics class together.” “Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment in Huntsville is the Southeast’s largest center for the arts,” says Charles Winters of Huntsville. There are working artists, small businesses, restaurants and live performances in this building that used to be a textile mill. Down south, several locally owned shops at The Wharf in Orange Beach, including Fish on a Dish Unique Gifts, stock works of locally created art and handcrafted items including paintings, sculpture and jewelry. Another excellent source for unusual items is museum and tourist attraction gift shops. At the Coastal Arts Center at Orange Beach, the gift shop has one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry, pottery and artwork. Bellingrath Gardens and Home in Theodore also has a spacious gift shop filled with unusual gifts including a large selection of Coke-related merchandise.

Romantic Getaways

Getaways are always great gifts for couples to give each other and Alabama has a lot to offer for those not wanting to journey far from home. Check out one of the bed and breakfast destinations in Alabama, such as Winston Place in Valley Head at the base of Lookout Mountain. If skiing is something you enjoy, Cloudmont Ski Resort in Mentone offers skiing, horseback riding and hiking trails. And in Montgomery, the Harriott II Riverboat offers Valentine’s romantic cruises including dinner, roses, champagne and live entertainment. Sure, Valentine’s Day can be construed as a “Hallmark” holiday, but isn’t it fun to turn it around and make it about the love we have for the special people in our lives? We’re sure Saint Valentine would approve. A 22 FEBRUARY 2014

Clockwise, artwork by local artists can be found at Fish on a Dish Unique Gifts at the Wharf in Orange Beach, at Black Belt Treasures in Camden, and at Coastal Arts Gift Shop in Orange Beach.

A romantic cruise on the Alabama River aboard the Harriott II Riverboat might be the ticket to make your Valentine’s Day extra special. Below, bring home a piece of the Gulf with a gift from Fish on a Dish Unique Gifts in Orange Beach.

For more information:

Morgan Price Candy Company: www.morganpricecandy.com Hope’s Cheesecake: www.hopescheesecake.com Belle Chèvre: www.bellechevre.com Black Belt Treasures: www.blackbelttreasures.com Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment: lowemill.net The Wharf: alwharf.com Coastal Arts Center: www.coastalartscenter.com Bellingrath Gardens and Home: www.bellingrath.org Alabama Bed and Breakfast listing: www.bedandbreakfast.com/ Alabama Cloudmont Ski Resort: http://cloudmont.com/ Harriett II Riverboat: www.funinmontgomery.com/parkswww.alabamaliving.coop items/harriott-ii-riverboat

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014 23

February Gardening Tips

Alabama Gardens


Plants to love: explore your options before you commit


t’s February, the month when we celebrate love, and if you want to establish a more loving relationship with your landscape and garden there is no time like the present to find a botanical soulmate— or mates. While fall is prime planting season for trees, shrubs and many other perennials, most can still be planted successfully from now through early spring. But, as with all good long-term relationships, compatibility is key to a successful future so take time this month to explore your options before you commit. Personally, I’m drawn to plants that are both good looking and low-maintenance. Luckily, I can find just that combination of virtues in plants that have roots right here in Alabama and the Southeast: native plants. Native plants are already adapted to our environment so they are capable of flourishing without much pampering. They’re also supportive and nurturing, providing food and shelter for birds, insects and wildlife in our ecosystems. And there are so many to choose among—trees, shrubs, ferns, vines, herbaceous perennials, grasses and bulbs—so there is a native plant to match any spot in the landscape. Looking for something tall and handsome—a tree for instance? I am madly in love with silverbells and native dogwoods and magnolias, all of which are goodlooking and give me flowers. But there are also plenty of other appealing options—both blooming and nonblooming, deciduous and evergreen—to c o n s i d e r, such as hicko-

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ries, oaks, maples, cedars, plums and pines, to name a few. Drawn to smaller plants that are big on looks? There are lots of potential matches on the native shrub list. If you love those flowers, try native azaleas and hydrangeas as well as buttonbushes, sweetshrubs, buckeyes and viburnums. Want a fruitful relationship? Native holly, beautyberry and winterberry shrubs produce gorgeous berries that are lovely to behold and loved by birds and other critters…or plant native blueberries so you and the wildlife can eat. If you want plants that will stick around for a long time but still add lots of color to your life, explore the many choices of flowering native herbaceous perennials such as aster, hibiscus, phlox, coneflower, coreopsis, yarrow and many, many others. Want something that gives you cover but won’t take over your life or landscape? Try native honeysuckle or wisteria, passion vine, trumpet vine and jasmine. Prefer something dignified but interesting? Native grasses, ranging from the whimsical, wispy color of purple muhly grass to the simple beauty of native sea oats or rushes, could be just the match. Have a yen for a shady character? Get yourself some Christmas, Southern wood, shield and lady ferns. As you can see, the possibilities for new loves in your garden are extensive. Thankfully you don’t have to choose just one, but you may want to know more about them all before you commit. To my knowledge there is no online matchmaking service available to link gardeners with plants (though maybe that’s a great idea for some enterprising, tech-savvy entrepreneur). However, you can do your own research (online or at your local library or garden center) to find out more about each plant’s personality and traits. Three online options are the Plant Native website (www.plantnative.org/rplalgams.htm), the Alabama Plant Atlas site (floraofalabama.org) and in the Alabama Cooperative Extension

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Divide and move perennials, unless they are beginning to show new growth. Clean up limbs and other yard debris that may have fallen in the winter weather. Order seeds for the spring and summer garden. Plant roses and hardy perennials. Transplant deciduous shrubs and trees unless the buds have begun to swell. Start warm-season vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers and summer bedding plants, in cold frames or indoor settings now. Prune summer flowering shrubs now. Don’t prune the spring bloomers until after they flower! Check seeds you have saved from last year to make sure they are still viable (seed coat in good condition and not rotted). Clean out moldy or sprouting seeds each time you refill bird feeders. Give your sweetheart live plants, seeds or gardening tools for Valentine’s Day. Attend gardening workshops and classes or get involved with your local gardening groups. Shop for off-season garden supplies that may be on sale this time of year. Repair and spruce up window boxes, lawn furniture, bird houses and feeders, garden tools and other outdoor equipment and items.

System’s publication Herbaceous Perennials for Alabama (www.aces.edu/pubs/docs/A/ ANR-0566/ANR-0566.pdf). Another source of information on plants (both native and nonnative) that will stick with you for better or worse is Felder Rushing’s book Tough Plants for Southern Gardens. As you’re looking for new loves, though, don’t forget your old flames. Take care of the plants that are already in your life and landscape and start planting those good-provider plants for the spring and summer. Now is the time to plant cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, lettuce, beets, carrots, radishes, mustard, asparagus, English peas, Irish potatoes, onion sets and strawberries! A

Katie Jackson is a freelance writer and editor based in Opelika, Alabama. Contact her at katielamarjackson@ gmail.com.


Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014 25

Worth the Drive

The Crepe Myrtle Café at Blooming Colors Open for breakfast and lunch 1192 Donahue Drive, Auburn 334-887-0887 www.crepemyrtlecafe.com


To taste all these crepes (including dessert!) definitely requires more than one visit By Jennifer Kornegay

The fresh produce at The Market and the Crepe Myrtle Cafe are ample reasons to visit Blooming Colors in Auburn.


here are several food and restaurant types common across Alabama: places like meat ‘n threes, BBQ joints and catfish houses. But in Auburn, tucked behind Blooming Colors garden nursery is The Market (selling fresh, local produce), and tucked behind that is The Crepe Myrtle Café. And in this small café, they specialize in one thing: crepes. In fact, almost the entire menu is devoted to this sophisticated substitute for a sandwich. Crepes? And only crepes? It may sound a little risky to have such a narrow focus. And crepes are certainly not a Southern staple. I can hear my dad’s booming bass voice declaring (jokingly), “Real men don’t eat quiche!” I imagine whoever coined that phrase (which he loved to repeat any time my mom served quiche) would feel the same way about crepes. But a single bite of these singular creations is all it will take to make you a believer (even if you are the manliest of men), and bring you back time and again so you can try every single version of crepe that the café makes. They may serve crepes almost exclusively, but there are many, many different types of crepes. Or more accurately, there are many, many different ways to fill the basic crepe. There’s the Caesar with roasted chicken, melted mozzarella, romaine lettuce and tomatoes drizzled with classic Caesar dressing. There’s the Steak and Bleu, a mouth-watering mix of juicy marinated flank steak, roasted peppers, caramelized onions and tangy blue cheese crumbles. Or the Mexican, with citrus marinated chicken, Monterey jack and cheddar cheese, shredded lettuce, sour cream and homemade salsa. The Tomato Lover and Roasted Veggie crepes take delicious advantage of The Market’s access to amazing area produce; both

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are stuffed with tomatoes, zucchini, squash, onions, mushrooms, peppers and more, and this ingredient list changes based on the season and what’s at its peak. Imagine one of the best Greek salads you’ve ever had rolled into a thin, airy crepe, and you’re actually fantasizing about the café’s Greek Chicken Crepe. Briny (kalamata olives), salty (feta), crunchy (raw spinach), hot (pepperoncini peppers) and smoky (roasted red peppers) merge into one fabulous flavor. And while the Tzatziki sauce makes it a messy affair to eat, there’s a napkin dispenser on each table, so you can do it. Eleven different savory crepes are always available, plus soups and salads and a few “daily special” offerings. But note the word savory in the above sentence. There are still more crepes: A selection of eight dessert crepes makes it hard to resist ending your lunch on a sweet note. Crepe traditionalists will swoon over the Nutella Crepe. With an ooey-gooey smear of the chocolate-hazelnut spread sliding between layers of slightly chewy crepe, this delight rivals the confections peddled from street carts in Paris. The Apple Sizzle challenges your mom’s apple pie. And the Peaches N’ Cream, with its grilled whiskey-soaked peaches, sweetened sour cream, brown sugar and candied pecans, takes the crepe far below the Mason Dixon line. Even if, for some reason, none of these sound appetizing to you (maybe you were born without taste buds or lost them in a tragic accident), there are other reasons to visit. Blooming Colors is jampacked with plants and pots and garden accessories. And The Market is a bigger, cuter version of your favorite roadside veggie stand. Rows of wooden crates hold whatever happens to be growing at the moment, shelves are stacked with jars of raw local honey and homemade salsas and sauces, a freezer is full of casseroles to go and a table displays rustic pottery made by an area artist. Visit The Market for the best bounty from Alabama farmers, ripe and ready to take home. And visit the café for crepes, crepes and more crepes. A

Jennifer Kornegay is the author of a children’s book, “The Alabama Adventures of Walter and Wimbly: Two Marmalade Cats on a Mission.” She travels to an out-of-the way restaurant destination in Alabama every month. She may be reached for comment at j_kornegay@charter.net.


Tables indicate peak fish and game feeding and migration times. Major periods can bracket the peak by an hour before and an hour after. Minor peaks, half-hour before and after. Adjusted for daylight savings time. a.m. p.m. Minor Major Minor Major

FEB. 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 MAR. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

-06:46 07:16 07:31 08:01 02:01 02:31 03:16 01:31 03:16 08:46 09:46 10:31 11:16 11:46 -07:01 01:16 01:46 02:16 02:46 03:01 -11:46 09:31 10:01 10:31 10:46 11:16 11:46 06:01 06:31 12:46 01:16 01:46 02:31 03:16 01:01 11:31 08:46 09:31 10:16 11:01 05:16 -12:16

Alabama Living

06:31 12:16 12:46 01:16 01:46 08:16 08:46 09:16 10:16 11:46 04:01 04:31 05:01 05:31 06:01 06:31 12:46 07:31 07:46 08:16 08:31 09:01 09:46 04:16 04:16 04:31 04:46 05:01 05:31 05:46 12:01 12:16 06:46 07:01 07:31 08:01 08:46 09:31 02:31 03:16 04:01 04:31 04:46 11:31 05:46 06:16

12:16 12:31 01:01 07:31 08:16 09:16 10:46 ---01:31 02:46 03:46 04:46 -12:31 07:16 08:01 09:01 10:01 11:46 ---01:46 03:01 03:46 04:31 05:01 -06:16 07:01 07:46 08:31 09:31 11:01 ---01:31 03:01 04:01 05:01 11:46 06:31 07:16

05:46 06:16 07:01 01:46 02:16 03:01 04:01 05:16 06:46 08:01 09:16 10:01 10:46 11:31 05:31 06:31 01:01 01:46 02:31 03:16 04:16 05:31 07:01 08:16 09:16 09:46 10:31 11:01 11:31 05:46 12:16 12:46 01:16 01:46 02:31 03:31 04:31 06:01 07:31 08:46 09:46 10:31 11:16 05:46 12:01 12:46 FEBRUARY 2014 27

Send your questions to: James Dulley

Alabama Living 6906 Royalgreen Dr. Cincinnati, OH 45244

Consumer Wise

You can also reach Dulley online at: www.dulley.com

Efficient cooking:

replacing ovens, ranges, and other tips

By James Dulley


I’m updating my kitchen appliances. I am a bit of a chef, so I want efficient tools. What are the best appliances for cooks? Can you share a few energy-efficient cooking tips?


If you’re a frequent cook, you consume a lot of energy. The major energy user is the refrigerator. Odds are if you prepare a lot of food, you have a large refrigerator and open it often. Place commonly used items (milk, butter, etc.) near the front of your fridge. Keep the fridge fairly full; use water jugs if needed. In addition to selecting efficient cooking appliances, there are simple tips to cut your energy use. Keep in mind cooking tips change from winter to summer. During winter, the heat and humidity from cooking help warm your house and reduce the heating load on your furnace or heat pump. During summer, this same heat makes your air conditioner run more, increasing electric bills. When installing kitchen appliances, locate them properly. The cooking range and oven should not be directly next to the

James Dulley

is a nationally syndicated engineering consultant based in Cincinnati

28 FEBRUARY 2014

Use microwave oven for cooking smaller amounts of food. SOURCE: AMANA

refrigerator. Their heat makes the refrigerator compressor run longer. Also, don’t put the range or oven under a window; a breeze can carry away heat before it gets into your pots and pans. The most efficient electric range heating elements are induction units. These elements produce magnetic energy which warms magnetic (usually iron and steel) pots and pans. If there is no utensil on an induction element, the element does not get hot. Induction elements provide heating control almost as precise as gas burners. Induction elements offer an energy advantage: Nearly all of the energy goes into the pot or pan to heat food. With a regular resistance element, the heat transfers from the range top to the base of the pot. A lot of heat is lost to the air, never getting to the food. Since you do not always want to use magnetic cooking dishes, your range should have only one or two induction elements. The others should be standard resistance or halogen. Halogen elements heat up faster, but are not as efficient. Opt for different sizes, then match the size of the pot to the element size for less heat loss. When it comes to ovens, electric is preferred by most professionals. It holds more even heat than gas for baking. Another advantage, especially during summer, is that electric does not introduce extra moisture to your house. Extra moisture means more

work (and energy use) for your air conditioner. When gas or propane burns, the basic products of combustion are water and carbon dioxide. A convection oven saves energy as compared to a standard oven. Even though the small air circulation fan uses some electricity in a convection oven, they cook so much faster that there is significant overall savings. Not all foods roast and bake well in the convection mode, so you will not be able to use it for everything. Choose a self-cleaning oven model because it often has heavier wall insulation needed for the super-high cleaning temperature. Want great energy savings in the kitchen? Use small countertop appliances when possible. For example, a small toaster oven, especially one with a convection option, uses significantly less electricity than large oven elements. This is true even though the large oven has more wall insulation. Countertop electric woks, rice cookers, etc. are other good examples. During summer, use them outdoors to reduce indoor heat. Microwave ovens are still the most efficient appliance for cooking individual food items. They run on lower wattage and offer short cook times. If you are cooking larger quantities of food, a large oven remains the best choice. Plan your baking to make similar-baking-temperature foods simultaneously or consecutively while the oven is hot. A www.alabamaliving.coop

Around Alabama February

Annual Seafood Festival promises to be a delight for young 22 andThe22nd old. The 2014 event will be held Saturday, Feb. 22, at the Orange Orange Beach • Seasfood Festival and Best of Baldwin Expo

Beach Sportsplex, on William Silvers Parkway, just off Canal Road. Arts and crafts vendors will be selling an assortment of wares including jewelry, pottery, metal items, candles, plants and more. If arts and crafts are not your thing, check out the musical acts and car show typically featuring more than 100 vehicles. To round out the day’s events visit the KidsZone, the silent auction and of course, the seafood booths! Also on the 22nd and new this year is the Best of Baldwin Expo which is being held in conjunction with the Seafood Festival. The new Expo is an indoor event at the Event Center at The Warf and will showcase many area museums, historical venues, home-based businesses and arts and crafts vendors who need to be in a more controlled environment. Be sure to park at the Event Center and use the free shuttle that will be running between both locations! The Festival and Expo will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit the Orange Beach Parks and Rec website, www. obparksandrec.com, or call their office for more information, 251-9811524.

7-9 • Gadsden, Altrusa Antique Show. Gadsden Convention Hall, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. All exhibits for sale. Sponsored by Altrusa International, Inc. of Gadsden. Tickets are $5, bring in this ad for $1 off your ticket at the door. Contact the Show Chair, Connie Meloun, at 256-549-8321 for information. 8-15 • Birmingham, “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.” Watch the Mark Twain classic come alive on stage at the Birmingham Children’s Theatre. Meetand-greet with the cast after the show. Tickets: ages 6 and up $9-$11. Information: 205-458-8181 or www.bct123.org

15 • Wetumpka, CrossFit’s “Mission Possible” fitness competition to benefit Mision Vida Nueva, a nonprofit organization providing a home for orphans in Guatemala. The mission is also to provide an education and teach the children about Jesus Christ. The competition will be from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Email: crossfitintrigue@gmail.com 15• Mobile, Mardi Gras. Experience America’s oldest Mardi Gras in historic Mobile, known for it’s family-friendly atmosphere. Guests young and old will delight in elaborate costumes, parades, food and music. 20-22 • Union Springs, “Mama Won’t Fly!” at the Red Door Theatre. Friday and Saturday dinner at 6 p.m. and play begins at 7:30. No dinner Sunday, showtime at 2:30 p.m. A family-friendly comedy from the same playwrites that brought “The Hallelujah Girls” to the theatre in 2013. Dinner is $15 and the play is an additional $15. Information: 334-738-8687 or www.reddoortheatre.org 22 • Fort Payne, Winter Gospel and Bluegrass Jubilee at The Pickin Post. The Jubilee will feature Canaan’s Crossing and Barry Rowland and Deliverance beginning at 6 p.m. Reserved tickets are $15 and general admission is $10. Seating is limited. For tickets call Adam Berry at 256-605-1801. 22 • Marion, Low Country Boil. Hosted by the Perry County Historical Society from 5-7 p.m. An evening of lowcountry-style cooking with a wide

variety of country and old time music. Information: 334-683-6336. 28 • Troy, Minetti String Quartet concert. Crosby Theatre at 7 p.m. The Australian-based quartet has won more international prizes in 10 years than any other quartet in the world. General admission tickets are $20; students are $5. Tickets are available online at www. troyartscouncil.com

March 1 • Rainsville, “An Evening with Coach Gene Stallings.” Dekalb County Schools Coliseum. Dinner will also be served. For tickets contact Adam Berry, 256-605-1801. 8 • Robertsdale, Baldwin County Beekeepers Association Workshop. PZA Civil Park on Hwy 104 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. $40 per person or $45 per family. Bring your supplies and protective gear. Information: 251-213-0168 or bemisroger@hotmail. com 8• Hanceville, Swamp John’s. A Fundraiser for the Dodge City Fire Department from 4-7 p.m. Your choice of fish, chicken or shrimp along with french fries, cole slaw, pickles, onion, hush puppies, tea and desserts. $10.00 per plate. Tickets can be purchased at Dodge City Town Hall or from one of the firefighters.

Minetti String Quartet plays in Troy February 28

To place an event e-mail to events@alabamaliving.coop. or visit www. alabamaliving.coop. You can also mail to Events Calendar, P.O. Box 244014, Montgomery, AL 36124; Each submission must include a contact name and phone number. Deadline is two months prior to issue date. We regret that we cannot publish every event due to space limitations.

Alabama Living

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FEBRUARY 2014 29

How To Place a Line Ad in Marketplace

Market Place Miscellaneous LUMBER FOR SALE: CIRCULAR SAW Red & White Oak, Hickory, Ash - $1.20 BFT; Heart Pine - $5.00 BFT – 5” Treated Round: One Side Flat Fence Post 8 FT Long $9.50 each - Loring White (334)782-3636 (Tallapoosa) 18X21 CARPORT $695 INSTALLED – OTHER SIZES AVAILABLE - (706) 226-2739 DIVORCE MADE EASY – UNCONTESTED, LOST, IN PRISON OR Aliens. $149.95 - 26 years experience – (417)443-6511 METAL ROOFING $1.79/LINFT – FACTORY DIRECT! 1ST QUALITY, 40yr Warranty, Energy Star rated. (price subject to change) - (706) 226-2739 WALL BEDS OF ALABAMA / SOLID WOOD & LOG FURNITURE / HANDCRAFTED AMISH CASKETS / ALABAMA MATTRESS OUTLET – SHOWROOM Collinsville, AL – Custom Built / Factory Direct (256)490-4025, www.andyswallbeds. com, www.alabamamattressoutlet. com PUT YOUR OLD HOME MOVIES, PHOTOS, SLIDES or TAPES on DVD – (888)609-9778 or www.transferguy. com AERMOTOR WATER PUMPING WINDMILLS – windmill parts – decorative windmills – custom built windmill towers - call Windpower (256)638-4399 or (256)638-2352 COMMERCIAL ROOF LEAKS STOPPED QUICK – Even in the rain – Dealers (573)489-9346, azteccollc@ socket.net KEEP POND WATER CLEAN AND FISH HEALTHY with our aeration systems and pond supplies. Windmill Electric and Fountain Aerators. Windpower (256)638-4399, (256)899-3850 FREE BOOKS / DVDS – SOON government will enforce the “Mark” of the beast as church and state unite! Let Bible reveal. The Bible Says, POB 99, Lenoir City, TN 37771 – thebiblesaystruth@yahoo.com, (888)211-1715 USED PORTABLE SAWMILLS – BUY / Sell. Call Sawmill Exchange (800)4592148 or 713-sawmill. USA & Canada – www.sawmillexchange.com FLOORING FOR YOUR HOME! 1ST Quality – NO Seconds: Hardwood, Laminate, Carpet, Luxury Vinyl Tile & Planks, Sheet Vinyl, Ceramic Tile – In Home Estimates and Professional Installation available – ProTrax Flooring (334)531-3020, protraxinfo. gmail.com

30 FEBRUARY 2014

Business Opportunities PIANO TUNING PAYS – LEARN WITH American Tuning School home-study course – (800)497-9793 DR POWER EQUIPMENT WANTS YOUR IDEAS! Earn $300 for qualified new ideas for property tools and equipment. Go to www.drpower. com/300 and submit your idea

Vacation Rentals SMOKIES TOWNSEND, TN – 2BR / 2BA, Secluded Log Home, Jacuzzi, Fireplace, Wrap-Around Porch, Charcoal Grill. (865)320-4216, rmmtn@aol.com PIGEON FORGE, TN: $89 - $125, 2BR/2BA, hot tub, air hockey, fireplace, swimming pool, creek – (251)363-1973, www. mylittlebitofheaven.com GATLINBURG TOWNHOUSE ON BASKINS CREEK! GREAT RATES! 4BR/3BA, short walk downtown attractions! (205)333-9585, hhideaway401@aol.com PANAMA CITY BEACH CONDO – OWNER RENTAL – 2BR / 2BA, wireless internet, just remodeled inside and outside – (334)790-0000, jamesrny@graceba.net, www. theroneycondo.com GATLINBURG, TN – FOND memories start here in our chalet – Great vacation area for all seasons – Two queen beds, full kitchen, 1 bath, Jacuzzi, deck with grill – 3 Night Special - Call (866)316-3255, Look for us on FACEBOOK / billshideaway HELEN GA CABIN FOR RENT – SLEEPS 2-6, 2.5 BATHS, FIREPLACE, Jacuzzi, washer/dryer – (251)9482918, www.homeaway.com/101769, email jmccracken@gulftel.com PIGEON FORGE, TN – 3 BEDROOM, 2 bath house – Walking distance to parkway, light# 1 - $85.00 / night – (256)309-7873, (256)590-8758 GULF SHORES / FT. MORGAN / NOT A CONDO! The original “Beach House” on Ft. Morgan peninsula – 2BR/1BA – Wi-Fi, pet friendly, nonsmoking – $695/wk, (256)418-2131, www.originalbeachhouseal.com CABIN IN MENTONE – 2/2, BROW view, hottub – For rent $100 / Night or Sale $199,000 – (706)767-0177 GULF SHORES PLANTATION CONDOS – Beachview sleeps 6, Beachfront sleeps 4 – (251)223-9248 APPALACHIAN TRAIL – CABINS BY the trail in the Georgia Mountains – 3000’ above sea level, snowy winters, cool summers, inexpensive rates – (800)284-6866, www.bloodmountain. com

Closing Deadlines (in our office):

FT. WALTON BEACH HOUSE – 3BR / 2BA – Best buy at the Beach – (205)566-0892, mailady96@yahoo. com MENTONE, AL – LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN – billiard table, Jacuzzi, spacious home, sleeps 14 – www. duskdowningheights.com, (850)7665042, (850)661-0678.   GULF SHORES, GULF FRONT – SEACREST CONDO: 1BR / 1BA, KING bed, hall bunks, granite countertops, free WiFi – (vrbo#435534), (256)3525721, amariewisener@gmail.com

April 2014 – Feb. 25 May 2014 – March 25 June 2014 – April 25

Musical Notes PIANOS TUNED, REPAIRED, refinished. Box 171, Coy, AL 36435. 334-337-4503 PLAY GOSPEL SONGS BY EAR - 10 lessons $12.95. “LEARN GOSPEL MUSIC”. Chording, runs, fills - $12.95 Both $24. Davidsons, 6727AR Metcalf, Shawnee Missions, Kansas 66204 – (913)262-4982


DISNEY – 15 MIN: 5BR / 3BA, private pool – www. orlandovacationoasis.com, (251)504-5756

BECOME AN ORDAINED MINISTER correspondence study. Founded in 1988. Free info. Ministers for Christ Outreach, 7558 West Thunderbird Road, Ste. 1 - #114, Peoria, Arizona 85381. http://www.ordination.org

GULF SHORES RENTAL– GREAT Rates! (256)490-4025, (256)523-5154 or www.gulfshoresrentals.us

FREE BIBLE CORRESPONDENCE COURSE – write to 23600 Alabama Highway 24, Trinity, AL, 35673

PIGEON FORGE - COZY CABINS FOR Rent by Owner (865) 712-7633, vrbo. com/483181 GULF SHORES COTTAGE – WATERFRONT, 2 / 1, PET FRIENDLY – RATES AND CALENDAR ONLINE http://www.vrbo.com/152418, (251)223-6114 LEWIS SMITH LAKE – NICE 3BR / 2BA house on deep water, covered dock, satellite TV’s, Central heat/air - $100 / night – (256)352-5721, amariewisener@gmail.com

Critters CHIHUAHUA PUPPIES. REGISTERED, guaranteed healthy, raised indoors in loving home, vet records and references. (256)796-2893


GULF SHORES PLANTATION GULF VIEW, BEACH SIDE, 2 bedrooms / 2 baths, no smoking / no pets. Owner rates (205)339-3850 CABINS / PIGEON FORGE: JAN – MAR LOW WINTER RATES – (251)649-3344, (251)649-4049, www.hideawayprop.com ORANGE BEACH CONDO, 3BR/3BA; 2,000 SQ.FT.; beautifully decorated; gorgeous waterfront view; boat slips available; great rates - Owner rented (251)604-5226 VACATION RENTALS – MENTONE and GUNTERSVILLE – Hottubs – www.mentonelogcabins.com, www.vrbo.com/404770 - (256)657-4335 GATLINBURG – DOWNTOWN LUXURY CREEKSIDE CONDO – 2BR / 2BA, sleeps 6 – aubie12@ centurytel.net, (256)599-5552

Travel CARIBBEAN CRUISES AT THE LOWEST PRICE – (256)974-0500 or (800)726-0954


Ads are $1.75 per word with a 10 word minimum and are on a prepaid basis; Telephone numbers, email addresses and websites are considered 1 word each Ads will not be taken over the phone. You may email your ad to hdutton@areapower.com; or call (800)410-2737 ask for Heather for pricing.; We accept checks, money orders and all major credit cards; Mail ad submission along with a check or money order made payable to ALABAMA LIVING, P.O. Box 244014, Montgomery, AL 36124 – Attn: Classifieds.

The Alabama Military Support Foundation seeks your support as you start working your 2013 Alabama State taxes. You can demonstrate your support for Guardsmen and Reservists by making a contribution by using a check off box on the bottom of the Alabama State tax form. The mission of the foundation is to educate employers on the active role played in the defense of our nation by Guardsmen and Reservists, and to inform them on their legal rights and responsibilities. Funds donated to the foundation will be used to educate and recognize outstanding employers who go above and beyond to support employees serving in the Guard and Reserve. Your financial contributions to the Alabama Military Support Foundation will be greatly appreciated.

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014 31

Alabama Recipes

Pasta Cook of the month: John Piraino, Baldwin EMC

Baked ziti 1 pound dry ziti pasta 1 onion, chopped 1 pound lean ground beef 2 26-ounce jars spaghetti sauce (don’t use any “chunky style” sauces)

12 slices provolone cheese 1½ cups sour cream 16 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded 1 ⁄8 cup sugar 2 teaspoons dried basil

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add ziti pasta, and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes**, drain. In a large skillet, brown onion and ground beef over medium heat. Add 1½ jars of spaghetti sauce (mix remaining with ziti**), sugar and basil. Simmer for 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with tall sides with non-stick cooking spray. Layer as follows: ½ of the ziti, Provolone cheese, sour cream, ½ sauce mixture, remaining ziti, provolone cheese and remaining sauce mixture. Top with remaining mozzarella cheese. Bake for 30 minutes, or until cheeses are melted. **Tips: mix first layer of ziti with some sauce. Cover with foil before baking. Last 5 minutes, remove foil to get cheese nice and browned. For cooking ziti, cook 2 minutes less than package suggests, as it will finish cooking while baking. Use taller casserole dish, lower ones tend to overflow.

You could win $50! Upcoming recipe themes and deadlines are:

April May June

Freezer Meals

Party Foods Wild Game

February 15 March 15 April 15


consider pasta one of my love languages. With so many variations and ease of preparation, anyone can discover and prepare many delicious pasta dishes. Valentine’s Day is coming up and I hope you will try one of these pasta recipes. Cooking for your honey is always a sweet way to his or her heart, and cooking is a great way to show you care about someone.


online at alabamaliving.coop email to recipes@alabamaliving.coop mail to Recipes, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL 36124

Mary Tyler Spivey is a graduate of Huntingdon College where she studied History and French but she also has a passion for great food. Contact her at mspivey@areapower.com.

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Editor’s Note: Alabama Living’s recipes are submitted by our readers. They are not kitchen-tested by a professional cook or registered dietician. If you have special dietary needs, please check with your doctor or nutritionist before preparing any recipe.

Easy pasta pesto with chicken ¾ pound shell-shaped pasta 12 ounces cooked chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces 1 11-ounce container pesto 1 cup jarred roasted red peppers, sliced into thin strips

1 cup halved red grape tomatoes 1 tablespoon olive oil ½ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon black pepper 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Cook pasta in boiling, lightly salted water according to package directions. Drain. In a large bowl, toss pasta, chicken, pesto, red peppers, tomatoes, oil, salt and pepper. Sprinkle with parsley. Pamela LaRue Parker, Arab EC

Lasagna 1 ½ 1 2 2

pound ground chuck cup water cup chopped onion teaspoons vinegar teaspoons crushed oregano 9 cooked lasagna noodles

1 teaspoon minced garlic 8 ounces sour cream 2 cans tomato soup 12 ounces mozzarella cheese ½ teaspoon salt 12 ounces provolone cheese

In saucepan, brown ground chuck, onion, garlic and oregano. Add soup, water, salt and vinegar. Simmer 30 minutes stirring now and then. In 9x13-inch pan, arrange 3 alternate layers of meat sauce, noodles, sour cream and cheeses. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-45 minutes or until top cheese is brown. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

Pasta and peas 4 tablespoons chopped green onions 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 can English peas, drained 1 cup water

Jamie Petterson, Tallapoosa River EC 3 tablespoons fresh sweet basil if available; If not, ½ teaspoon dried oregano salt to taste pepper to taste ½ pound ditalini pasta romano or parmesan cheese

Sauté green onions in olive oil until wilted. Add drained English peas, water, sweet basil, salt and pepper. Cook about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in salted water until al dente. Drain off most of the water and add peas mixture to the pasta. Serve in a bowl and sprinkle Romano or Parmesan cheese on top. Serves 4 people. Sara Jean Brooklere, Baldwin EMC Alabama Living

Want to see recipes, feature stories, and other Alabama happenings during the month? LIke Alabama Living on facebook and don’t miss anything!

FEBRUARY 2014 33

TEC Recipe

What could be better and who doesn’t LOVE a chocolate covered strawberry! This is one of those truly simple and delicious recipes that can make any occasion special. It really is very simple to do! INGREDIENTS: 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate 4 ounces white chocolate 1 pound fresh strawberries DIRECTIONS: Coarsely chop 4 ounces of semisweet chocolate, then wash and dry 1 pound of strawberries (about 20). Place each of the chocolates in a glass bowl and microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Holding a strawberry by the stem end, dip 34  FEBRUARY 2014

in the melted chocolate, letting the excess chocolate drip off. Repeat with the remaining berries. Transfer the dipped strawberries onto a baking sheet lined with wax paper. As you set each berry down, slide it ½ inch to the side to prevent the formation of a chocolate “foot.” Use each of the chocolates to decorate as you desire. Refrigerate the strawberries until the chocolate is firm, at least 30 minutes. They will keep for up to 3 days, covered, in the refrigerator. A


Energy Store

You’ll score big points with a new refrigerator from the Energy Store!

Savings on GE, Maytag & Whirlpool Side x Side’s, Bottom Freezers and Top Freezers.

Now throughout February! For more information on our in-stock merchandise please call our office and ask for Energy Store Rep, Cristi Vaughn, at 205.468.3325 - ex. 245. Financing is available to our members, with credit approval. Just tell us to “Put it on my bill!” Remember, you do not have to be a cooperative member to purchase.

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014 35

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Market Place

Alabama Living

FEBRUARY 2014  37

Alabama Snapshots




My favorite vintage photo

Submit Your Images! APRIL THEME:

“First haircut”


Photos, Alabama Living, P.O. Box 244014 Montgomery, AL, 36124 RULES: Alabama Living will pay $10 for photos that best match our theme of the month. Photos may also be published on our website at www.alabamaliving.coop. Alabama Living is not responsible for lost or damaged photos. DEADLINE FOR APRIL: Feb. 28

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1. “My dad, Hoyt Moody, and the members of the ‘The Lone Star Buckeroos’ from the 40’s, early 50’s. The band disbanded during World War II when all the members served in the military. They reunited after the war.” SUBMITTED BY Diane Harris, Crane Hill 2. “ L i l l i e E u l i n e Halbrooks-Lee, my grandmother, in 1924, the year before she married.” SUBMITTED BY Kelly McNutt, Hartselle

3. “Burlie and Della Brown with children Dollie and Clayton, taken around 1934. The couple farmed a spot of land in Beaverton, and today their children, grandchildren and even greatgrandchildren still live on that land.” SUBMITTED BY Angie Daw, Beaverton


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